SMALL GROUP JOURNEYS
Malabar Coast Culinary Odyssey
Unveiling Flavours and Culture in Kerala
12 days from NZ$6,800 (US$4297 /€4020)per person
Pre & Post Tour Extensions Available
Limited to 7 guests | Escorted by Joji Jacob
5th Feb to 16th Feb 2024
Please contact us if you wish to customise this itinerary to suit your travel needs.
Unveiling Flavours and Culture
If you enjoy exploring food and culture, then the 12-day culinary tour of Kerala with Joji Jacob is perfect for you. Joji, a self-taught cook with a deep love for Indian cuisine, will guide you through four of the most diverse and delicious areas in God’s Own Country. Each area has its own unique culinary and cultural traditions, making this trip an unforgettable adventure.
This comprehensive tour takes you to the most important culinary and cultural destinations in Malabar Coast and Central Kerala, including:
- Kozhikode, a city known for its delicious food and rich culture influenced by Arabian, Persian, and Indian flavours.
- Fort Kochi, a charming town with Portuguese, Jewish, Chinese and Dutch colonial heritage.
- A laid-back overnight houseboat cruise through Kerala’s backwaters, savouring Kuttanad cuisine and village life.
- Marari Beach, a pristine and peaceful stretch of sand and palm trees. You’ll indulge in the coastal cuisine of the fishermen’s community.
In addition to visiting these amazing places, you will also have the opportunity to:
- Attend cooking classes and learn how to make some of Mapilla and Central Kerala’s most famous dishes.
- Visit local markets and learn about the different spices used in this region.
- Attend cultural performances, such as Kathakali dance and Kalari Payatu Martial arts.
- Take part in some optional activities like cycling, yoga, Ayurveda, or fishing.
- Visit historical landmarks, such as the Mattancherry Palace and the Santa Cruz Basilica.
- Travel on a commuter ferry and autorickshaw.
While in Kerala, you’ll have the chance to interact and learn from acclaimed chefs. Your group leader, Joji will provide valuable insights and anecdotes about Kerala’s rich culinary history and vibrant culture from his experience.
This tour is suitable for all levels of experience, from first-time travellers to seasoned foodies. The group size is limited to 7 people, so you can get the most out of your experience.
The tour includes all accommodation, meals as mentioned in the itinerary, all land transportation, and activities. There are no hidden costs, so you can book with confidence.
This is a truly unique and unforgettable way to experience the best of Mapilla and Central Kerala.
Book your tour today and start planning your culinary adventure!
Kochi Airport | Kozhikode | Fort Kochi | Allapuzha House Boat | Marari Beach | Kochi Airport
A foodie, self- taught cook & Tour Director @ ATI Travel NZ
Joji Jacob, a native of this region, is leading this tour. He has spent many years travelling and studying these regions and has acquired a deep knowledge of their cuisine, culture and natural wonders. He will share his enthusiasm and insights throughout this tour, showing you the hidden gems and the best spots to enjoy the local cuisine, scenery and traditions. You will learn a lot from his expertise and experience and have a memorable and enriching tour with him.
Day 1, - Kochi (Cochin) - Arrival
Namaskara – Greetings from Kochi, the gateway to the God’s own country, Kerala!
Upon arrival at Cochin International Airport, one of our team members will personally welcome you and escort you to your private transportation for a comfortable ride to your accommodation.
Meals: – | – | –
Accommodation: Flora Airport Hotel
Day 2, 3, 4 & 5 – Kozhikode (Calicut) - A Tapestry of Spice and Tradition
We will meet at the breakfast at 9 a.m. We’ll begin our culinary adventure by travelling in our private vehicle, which we will have for the entire trip. After a scenic four-hour drive, we will arrive in Kozhikode and check into our hotel. Take some time to relax before exploring this charming town during our four-night stay.
Kozhikode, often referred to as Calicut is a town that beckons travellers with its rich tapestry of culture, architecture, and culinary treasures. The town’s architecture beautifully weaves together its colonial history with indigenous influences, evident in its quaint Portuguese and British-era buildings alongside traditional Malabar-style structures. Kozhikode’s cuisine, deeply rooted in its Mappila traditions, is a gastronomic delight, boasting aromatic biryanis, spicy curries, and delectable seafood dishes. The bustling markets of Kozhikode are a sensory overload, offering a vibrant array of spices, dried fish, textiles, and handicrafts. As for culture, Kozhikode is a melting pot where diverse communities harmoniously coexist, making it a cultural crossroads enriched by the flavours, traditions, and hospitality of its people. This town invites you to explore its historic charm, savour its tantalising dishes, haggle in its bustling markets, and immerse yourself in its captivating culture.
During our stay in Kozhikode, we will have the pleasure of being hosted by Abida Rasheed, a renowned consultant chef for prominent hotels, a YouTube sensation, and a close friend of Joji. She is also known as the queen of Mapilla Cuisine, and her culinary creations are exceptionally unique. Abida will show us around the local market, introduce us to some of her favourite recipes, and guide us through the culturally rich and beautiful region of Kerala. This is an experience that you will cherish forever!
Meals: B | L(2) | –
Accommodation: The Raviz Calicut
Day 6, 7 & 8 – Fort Kochi - Where Heritage Meets the Sea
Kochi, often referred to as the “Queen of the Arabian Sea,” is a captivating city where a medley of influences converges. This coastal gem bears witness to the Portuguese, Dutch, Jewish, and Chinese footprints, each leaving an indelible mark on its culture and cuisine. As you embark on this leg of your journey, be prepared to embark on a gastronomic adventure like no other.
In Kochi, your taste buds will be treated to the exquisite flavours of Syrian Christian cuisine, a culinary tradition renowned for its opulent use of coconut milk, the fragrance of curry leaves, and the bounty of seafood from the Arabian Sea. These ingredients come together harmoniously, creating a symphony of tastes that dance on your palate.
While in Kochi, our exploration extends beyond the culinary realm. You’ll step into the historic precincts of Fort Kochi and Mattancherry, where the remnants of the spice trade era stand as a testament to the city’s storied past. The air is thick with nostalgia as you stroll through these charming streets, breathing in the whispers of centuries-old stories.
But the adventure doesn’t end there. We’ll hop aboard a local commuter ferry, sailing across the serene waters to Neema’s traditional home. Here, you’ll be immersed in the heart of local Christian cuisine. Neema, a culinary virtuoso, will generously share her culinary heritage, offering a deeper understanding of the flavours, traditions, and techniques that have been passed down through generations.
In Kochi, history, culture, and cuisine intertwine seamlessly, creating an experience that is as enriching as it is flavorful. It’s a city that invites you to savour every moment and discover the secrets that have shaped its unique identity. As you walk its vibrant streets and taste its delectable dishes, you’ll understand why Kochi is a place where heritage truly meets the sea.
Meals: B | L(1) | –
Accommodation: The Dutch Bungalow, Fort Kochi
Day 9 – Overnight Houseboat Cruise - The Serene Backwater Symphony
**Overnight Houseboat Cruise: A Tranquil Backwater Escape in Alappuzha, Kerala**
Embark on an enchanting Overnight Houseboat Cruise in Alappuzha, Kerala, often referred to as the “Venice of the East.” Step aboard a traditional Kettuvallam houseboat and set sail through serene backwaters that wind past emerald landscapes of swaying palm trees and endless paddy fields. As you drift along, immerse yourself in the unhurried village life, observing daily routines and age-old traditions.
Savour the distinctive flavours of Kuttanad cuisine, where locally sourced ingredients like duck, fish, tapioca, toddy, and banana take centre stage. As the sun dips below the horizon, your houseboat will anchor for the night, creating a magical setting where starlit waters mirror the sky. Enjoy a delectable onboard meal before drifting into a restful sleep in your cosy cabin.
Wake up to the soothing sounds of nature and witness the sunrise over the backwaters. After a traditional breakfast onboard, disembark for a leisurely stroll along the paddy fields, absorbing the tranquillity and natural beauty that surrounds you. This Overnight Houseboat Cruise offers more than just a journey; it’s an immersive experience into the heart of Kerala’s serene backwaters, leaving you with cherished memories of a timeless escape.
Meals: B | L | D
Day 10 & 11 – Marari Beach - Coastal Elegance and Simplicity
The final leg of our journey unfolds at Marari Beach, a pristine haven nestled between sun-kissed shores and swaying palms. Here, you’ll indulge in the coastal flavours of the local fishing community, a cuisine as diverse as the tides. Besides the culinary wonders, Marari Beach offers moments of tranquil respite by the sea. Optional activities like yoga, Ayurveda, and traditional fishing experiences allow you to connect with the coastal culture.
Meals: B | L(1) | –
Accommodation: Abad Turtle Beach
Day 12 – Kochi Departure!
We have reached the end of our ‘Malabar Coast Culinary Odyssey’. We sincerely hope that you have enjoyed your journey with us. It brings us great joy to know that you have chosen to travel with us and allowed us to introduce you to the serene pleasures of South India.
This is not merely a culinary expedition but a soul-stirring encounter with Kerala’s multifaceted flavours and culture, leaving indelible imprints of wonder and enchantment. Join us on this extraordinary odyssey, and let Kerala’s rich tapestry of experiences captivate your senses and spirit.
We offer an inclusive airport transfer service to Kochi International Airport for those returning home today. We eagerly await your return for another exhilarating ATI Travel experience. Namaskaram!
Our team would love to assist guests who have opted to continue their tour to a beach or hill station by accompanying them to their next destination. We offer two tour extension options:
Post-tour Extention 1 – (4N/5D) Hill Station, Western Ghats & Tribal experience (Coast to Hills Food Tour from NZ$2875)
Tour Extention 2 – (6N/7D) Heritage train journey, hills, tribes and village experience
If you haven’t yet booked your tour extension, kindly get in touch with us for more details.
Meals: B | – | –
Group Organiser Discount Available
A group organiser (4-10) can avail up to $2000 discount on a twin share package price. Please contact us for further details.
- Airport meet and greet with private transfers
- Private air-conditioned coach
- Handpicked boutique accommodations
- Private cooking classes
- Meals as per trip note
- English-speaking local guides
- All entrance fees, tips & gratuity
- Guaranteed departure with just six guests
- Visa fees
- Travel Insurance
- Medical Tests & other medical expenses
- Personal expenses
REQUEST DETAILED ITINERARY
Call Joji on +64 (0) 21 505 713
WhatsApp Joji on +64 21 505 713
Why should you join our escorted Culinary Journeys?
* A small-group (max 7) tour means better access to your guide for questions
* Discover authentic local cuisine
* Learn about the eclectic cuisine while getting to know the locals
* Learn the stories behind each item you try, meet local artists
* Learn about the local lifestyle, markets, temples, and architecture
* Street food walks
* Expand your knowledge of Indian cuisine on this exciting food tour
* No need to worry about stopping to pay at each venue, as food tastings are included
* Explore a variety of eateries, including Chef’s homes, restaurants, cafes and local joints
* Real hands-on experience
* Shop for fresh ingredients at the local markets
* Master the spice secrets behind dishes
* Prepare and eat four separate dishes in an authentic home kitchen
* Take home various chef’s original recipes
* Factory tour
* Family style lunch
* Wine tour – Discover the local wine
* This tour is perfect for foodies visiting India for the first time
* Sit back and relax in a private air-conditioned vehicle
An ideal trip for:
Solo Traveler, Group of Friends, Couples
If you want a rich and truly authentic experience of the region(s) being visited in a slow and well-paced manner as part of a small group of like-minded people who appreciate the personal care and attention provided to them, then this is the trip for you.
Safe Travels with ATI
We are uniquely qualified to ensure your well-being when travelling with us.
Our local partner offices work tirelessly with us behind the scenes
Our local suppliers and partners know our health & safety requirements, and our requirement to comply with all local regulations.
We follow the health and safety protocols required for your journey
All protocols involving physical distancing, vaccinations, masking, testing and other safety practices are communicated both before and during your journey. These protocols are carried out according to the latest local regulations and service provider requirements.
We facilitate in-country COVID-19 testing and provide round-the-clock support for any health-related matters
ATI’s network of local offices has the contacts and knowledge to support you throughout your journey, from coordinating COVID-19 testing (for travelling between countries and returning home) to answering any questions you have during your journey. Our local partners are experienced in handling any situation and have the contacts and knowledge to support guests 24/7.
ATI Travel will constantly monitor its safe travel plans to comply with global health and safety protocols
In the event that the tour director has to isolate, the tour will continue with the tour director remotely managing the tour in conjunction with the local team members.
If any of the guests have to isolate, all arrangements will be made to find accommodation and their medical support. This is not included in the package costs and must be covered by the individual’s travel insurance.
The guest can join the tour after the required isolation and clearance if the tour is still active. In the event that the tour has been completed, the guest will be supported to make their return passage home.
We Got You Covered
Something for everyone
Whether you are a first-timer or experienced traveller, our tours meet the expectations, needs and interests of each individual on the tour. Our guests continuously tell us that it surpasses all their expectations.
This tour is suitable for guests who do not mind travelling that extra mile in search of those unique experiences. If you are interested in culture, cuisine, architecture, people interaction and textiles, you will love this tour.
Boutique accommodation, handpicked by us, for you to rest and rejuvenate in beautiful settings such as palaces, homestay, mansions, farm stay, business hotels and glamping is part of the travel experience we curate for you.
Travel in comfort
We provide airport to airport service, for your comfort and safety. Your private vehicle and the English speaking driver will accompany you throughout the journey. Check out the feedback we have received from our guests.